DOJ smacks down pro-Trump insurrectionist's claim he was an 'accidental tourist' who didn't know Capitol was off limits
Robert Reeder (FBI)

Smacking down an insurrectionist's claim that he didn't know the Capitol was off limits, federal prosecutors are requesting jail time for the man they say remains "proud of his participation" in the events of Jan. 6.

Robert Reeder, of Maryland, pleaded guilty in June to a misdemeanor count of parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. But his attorney took issue with language in the agreement, saying his client "wanted to establish for the record that he didn't force his way into the Capitol and 'did not realize he couldn't enter,'" according to a report from WUSA9, Washington's CBS affiliate.

Prosecutors responded in a sentencing memo filed Friday requesting that Reeder serve two months in jail, calling his claims "divorced from reality."

"The defendant would ask the court to believe that despite being tear gassed and shot with pepper balls, he was simply unaware that entry into the Capitol was prohibited at the time," prosecutors wrote. "A clear message must be sent to this defendant that he is being held responsible for all of his illegal conduct during the riots. Tellingly, (Reeder) continues to minimize his conduct...as an 'accidental tourist with a phone trying to document everything.' ... The defendant chose to stand among the crowd and record as they yelled 'Hang Mike Pence.'"

More from the DOJ's sentencing memo: "Although the Defendant has pleaded guilty to Parading in the Capitol he appears to be proud of his participation in the attack on the United States Capitol —a violent attack that forced an interruption of the certification of the 2020 Electoral College vote count, threatened the peaceful transfer of power after the 2020 Presidential election, injured more than one hundred law enforcement officers, and resulted in more than a million dollars' worth of property damage," they added. "Indeed, the Defendant was so proud of his participation in the riot that he recorded it for the world to see – to see him chant 'Fight for Trump' as he scaled the steps of the Capitol and headed toward the mob entering the building; to see him breach the Capitol twice; to stand by and videotape an officer being assaulted; and to hear him brag that he 'battle[d] the police.' For the Defendant, these unlawful acts were a source of pride and accomplishment. For the nation, it was a permanent source of shame and sorrow."

WUSA reporter Scott McFarlane called the memo "a small breakthrough."

"'Unlawful Picketing/Parading' has become the boiler plate misdemeanor plea agreement in lower-level cases," McFarlane wrote on Twitter. "So far, none of those who've pleaded guilty to the charge have been sentenced to prison. Reeder would be the first, if judge goes along with DOJ request."

According to the station, Reeder has also claimed he lost his security clearance due to his arrest and hasn't been able to work in his former job with the Transportation Security Administration, but the TSA says it has no record of Reeder ever being employed by the agency.

Reeder, wearing a "Make America Great Again" hat, recorded numerous videos at the Capitol, and was later identified by the FBI using facial recognition software. At one point, he asked a Capitol police officer for water. He also told officers they should retreat.

"I'm leaving now, I got tear-gassed at least four times inside the Capitol," Reeder said in one of the videos. "I saw the lady they say got shot, I walked right past her in a pool of blood. And it's just completely crazy in there.

"Got shot with pepper balls. It was f*ckin' nuts!" he said. "We had to do battle with the police inside. It was crazy, absolutely insane."

Reeder's sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 18.